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Information about completing the Internet Recreational Effort and Catch iREC reporting program

By completing the Internet Recreational Effort and Catch iREC report, you are providing essential effort and catch information for months, areas, and types of fishing in order to help us make management decisions to support sustainable fisheries in the long-term.

Watch this video for step by step instructions on completing the iREC report

How you are contacted

How many emails will I receive regarding the iREC reporting program?

We will send you a welcome and a thank you email. You will also receive 1 or 2 reminder emails after your reporting period if you have not yet completed your report.

Why didn’t I get an email regarding my participation in the iREC reporting program?

Emails about the iREC reporting program will be sent to the email address that you provided to us when you purchased your Tidal Waters Sport Fishing Licence(s). Please ensure that the email address in your National Recreational Licensing System (NRLS) account is correct. You can also find your participation and access information for the iREC program on your licence.

What do I do if I am receiving iREC reporting program emails on behalf of a friend or family member?

If possible, please provide their unique access link to them. We are unable to provide the reporting program by mail.

Who is PRA Inc. and why is it conducting this reporting program?

PRA Inc. is an independent consulting company that has been contracted by Fisheries and Oceans Canada to conduct this online reporting program and contact you by email. PRA Inc. has extensive experience designing and conducting online surveys.

Why was a private consulting company, PRA Inc., given access to my email address?

PRA Inc. has access to your name and email address so it may deliver the reporting program to you. PRA Inc. has certified that it will only use the information for the purpose of contacting you regarding this reporting program and will delete your email address when no longer needed for this program.

Why are you sending unsolicited email messages to me about a reporting program and are these email messages permitted under Canada's anti-spam legislation?

We are sending email messages to you to collect information regarding your fishing activity which you are required to provide (see the condition for provision of information on your licence). The emails you receive regarding this reporting program from DFO are permitted under Canada’s anti-spam legislation because they are not spam as defined by this legislation. Specifically, they have no commercial purpose and their intent is to provide notice of a legal obligation as stated in Section 3(c) (ii) of the Electronic Commerce Protection Regulations. More information about Canada's anti-spam legislation.


How long does it take to complete a report?

The iREC reporting program takes 5 to 10 minutes to complete for most respondents or somewhat longer for more active fishers. It must be detailed in order to support estimation of effort and catch of many different species by month, area and fishing method.

Why are you asking me about my fishing catch at the beginning of the month?

We send emails prior to your reporting period to remind you of your program participation and provide information that will make it easier for you to complete your report.

Why are only a few days of the month available to report on in the iREC reporting program?

The days available for reporting are updated as the month progresses to prevent inadvertent reporting for dates that have yet to occur. Also, the program calendar does not allow selection of dates outside the period when your selected licence is valid in the month of the reporting period.

I have a term licence that straddles 2 months, but I can only enter information in the iREC reporting program for 1 month. How do I report all of my fishing?

Only report on your fishing activity on the dates within the month you have been selected for. For example, if you had a 3 day licence active from June 29 through July 1, and you were selected for June, the program only permits you to report for June 29 and June 30.

What if I did not fish, or do not plan to fish during the period I was selected for?

The Pacific coast offers opportunities for fishers to fish different species all year long, and we estimate recreational fishing effort and catch year-round. Completing your report to let us know that you did not fish in a particular month is just as important as letting us know that you did.

What if I prefer to report on a different month instead of the one for which I was selected?

The reporting program design requires that we assign people to report on a particular month. So we do not allow fishers to report on months they are not selected for.

Why am I being asked to participate in the iREC reporting program about fishing when fishing is closed?

Although fishing for certain species may be closed during the month for which you have been selected, fishing is open for many species. The reporting program asks for your effort and catch for a wide variety of species. For example, when fishing for coho salmon or halibut is closed, fishing for dungeness crab or lingcod may be open.

Report questions

I've already entered my records into the DFO licensing system, why do I have to enter them here again?

Records entered into the National Recreational Licensing system do not serve the same purpose as the information collected by this reporting program.

If I have reported my catch in a logbook or to a creel observer, do I still need to report it to the iREC program?

Yes, even if you have provided this catch information through another means, we require that you complete your iREC report as well.

What if I fished but did not catch anything during the period I was selected for?

Complete your report anyway. Information about fishers who did not catch finfish or shellfish is important to ensure the statistics calculated from the program responses are accurate. Note that we collect information on released catch as well as retained catch.

Why do I need to include catch for my children under 16 who hold a juvenile licence?

We need to estimate total effort and catch from all fishers, including juvenile fishers. You can help give an accurate picture of recreational fishing impacts by reporting effort and catch for juvenile fishers fishing with you.

What if I don't know which Management Area I fished in?

Use the map provided in the iREC reporting program or on our website to determine the area(s) where you fished.

Technical issues

How do I access the reporting program?

There are 2 ways to access the reporting program:

  1. Login using the information provided on your licence
  2. Click on the link provided in the reporting program emails we send you

If you are using the link provided in these emails, click on it or copy and paste it into your browser. Make sure there are no breaks or omissions in the link.

How do I complete my report if I don't have a computer?

Your report can be completed on a smart phone or other device connected to the Internet as well as a computer. Otherwise, please use a friend’s computer or a public access computer (for example, at a library) with a secure Internet connection. We are unable to provide the reporting program by mail.

How do I know if my report has been submitted?

When you see the screen “Thank you, your iREC report has been successfully submitted” you can be sure that your report has been submitted.

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